You know what good ol' testosterone does for the body: It’s the hormone that makes a man a man (though, yes, women have some, too), and is essential for developing and maintaining muscle mass. Your body’s at its peak T at age 20, and then it slowly declines, reducing by 1 percent each year starting at around age 40. Luckily, you can stave off the process—and even boost your testosterone to the higher levels needed for improving muscle growth if you’re looking to get bigger—by how you work out.
“In general, all types of exercise stimulate the release and production of testosterone,” says sports medicine doctor Jordan Metzl, MD, author of The Exercise Cure. “But there is data to suggest that lifting weights and high-intensity work might stimulate the greatest release of testosterone.” While research shows that that post-workout super-spikes may be temporary, the overall boosting benefit of regular exercise can’t be ignored. Pretty much any and all resistance work is worthy of a place in your T-tweaking program; on the other hand, long, slow cardio slogs, such as everlasting jogging sessions, may have a negative effect on testosterone levels.
These five workouts includes both heavy lifting and high-intensity bouts of plyo work, for the maximum kickup of T production.